Il cholesterol it is a lipid substance essential for the proper functioning of our body. nonetheless, a high presence of cholesterol in the blood can pose health risks, especially for the cardiovascular system. To reduce the risk of heart disease, it is essential to keep cholesterol levels in check. In this article, we will explore the best foods that can help lower cholesterol naturally and promote better cardiovascular health.
The two types of cholesterol
Cholesterol is divided into two main categories: LDL cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein) often known as “poor cholesterol”, and the HDL cholesterol (high density lipoprotein) known as “positive cholesterol”. LDL cholesterol tends to build up in the arteries, forming plaques that can impede blood flow and increase the risk of cardiovascular problems. On the other hand, HDL cholesterol helps remove excess cholesterol from your arteries, helping to prevent plaque buildup.
hisLDL (low density lipoprotein), often known as “poor cholesterol”, is a fraction of cholesterol present in the blood. Lipoproteins are the structures that carry cholesterol and other lipids in the blood. LDL is responsible for transporting cholesterol from the tissues and liver to the body’s cells.
Il HDL (High Density Lipoprotein), commonly known as “positive cholesterol”, is a type of lipoprotein found in the blood. Its main role is to transport cholesterol from peripheral cells and tissues to the liver, where it is eliminated or reused.
HDL performs an important function in removing excess cholesterol from artery walls. Unlike LDL, HDL has the ability to remove excess cholesterol from the atherosclerotic plaques present in the arteries, thereby contributing to the reduction of the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Foods that help lower cholesterol
It is important to include foods in your diet that help lower LDL cholesterol and maintain optimal HDL cholesterol levels. Here is a list of foods that can help achieve this:
- Fruits and vegetables:
- There body They are rich in soluble fiber, which helps reduce the absorption of cholesterol in the blood.
- Orange e strawberries they contain pectin, a soluble fiber that can lower LDL cholesterol levels.
- Spinach e broccoli they are vegetables rich in antioxidants and fiber that can help keep cholesterol under control.
- Artichoke they are a source of cynarin, a compound that can stimulate bile production and help metabolize cholesterol.
- Weight, lentils e this They have a lot of soluble fiber, which can bind to cholesterol in the digestive tract and reduce its absorption.
- Olive oil:
- hisextra virgin olive oil It is an excellent source of monounsaturated fat, which can help lower LDL cholesterol and maintain positive lipid balance.
- Fish rich in omega-3:
- Salmon, tones, herring and other oily fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients can lower blood triglyceride levels and promote cardiovascular health.
- Almonds, night e hazelnut they contain healthy fats, fiber, and antioxidants that can help lower LDL cholesterol.
- Whole grains:
- Oatmeal, farro, orzo and other whole grains are high in soluble fiber and nutrients beneficial to cardiovascular health. They can help lower LDL cholesterol and improve fat metabolism.
It is important to underline that the inclusion of these foods in one’s diet should be done in a balanced and varied diet, combined with an active and healthy lifestyle.
Adopting a diet rich in cholesterol-lowering foods can help promote optimal cardiovascular health. The foods mentioned in this article, such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, olive oil, omega-3-rich fish, nuts, and whole grains, can play an important role in maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. Remember that it is always recommended to consult a doctor or a dietitian before making any significant changes to your diet, especially if you have any specific health problems or medical conditions.